Follow the Rumors

The time of year is approaching when job-seeking grad students and postdocs eagerly wait for any communication from prospective employers. While one could easily sit and refresh the Rumor Mill pages all day long, and I offer an alternative that might preserve both your productivity and your sanity this job-hunting season while also preventing the entire site from slowing down due to the increased traffic. You can “monitor” individual wiki pages and receive an email every time the page is changed, along with a summary of the changes. Setting this up requires a few steps:

  1. Sign up for an account on the AstroBetter wiki. The sign up process requires information on your host institution so that we can prevent spammers. All such information is deleted immediately after your account is verified. Verification is done by us, by hand, so it may take as long as 24 hours. Please be patient.
  2. Once verified, login using your new username and password. There is a box on the upper right corner of the page for logging in.
  3. Navigate to the Rumor Mill for postdocs or faculty/staff positions.
  4. Click on the Monitor (eye) icon at the top of the page. This will change your personal setting for the page and you should start receiving emails whenever the page changes. The eye icon should now have a red X for pages you are monitoring. Monitoring can also be disabled by clicking on the icon again.
  5. To anonymously post to the rumor mill, make sure to log out.
You will receive emails every time a change is made to the page and they will show who made the change and the changed content. By monitoring a page via email, rather than constantly refreshing the rumor mill pages, the performance for the whole site should remain good even through the most intense job-results season. We are also working on getting a working wiki RSS feed, but unfortunately the software we are using only has a wiki-wide RSS feed and may need to be fully upgraded to even get that working properly. We appreciate any feedback you have; but please be aware we are two full time astronomers who admin the wiki in our “free” time for the good of the astronomical community.
Good luck to all in this job-hunting season!
4 comments… add one
  • Tony Dec 19, 2011 @ 8:43

    Or a working RSS feed would be nice 🙂

  • Josh Dec 20, 2011 @ 14:59

    My account says “account disabled”. no clue what its status is. I had to type the spambotcode a couple of times to get through and then it said the account already existed…

    • Jessica Dec 20, 2011 @ 16:38

      Accounts have to be approved by an admin, which can take up to 24 hours. Try again now.

  • Josh Dec 21, 2011 @ 4:10

    YAY, it works, it works! Thanks for the reply.

    Since I clicked some things a couple of times (I would totally fail the Turing test) I missed the message that the account was created but needed approval.

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